Monday, December 5, 2011

Sewing Miriam's Draperies

Sooooo, I thought it would be easier to sew unlined draperies than lined ones. You would think that by now I would realize that there is no such thing as an easy shortcut in this decorating business. I didn't want lined draperies in Miriam's dining room, because I wanted a more casual, simple, cottage look for her home.

Sooooo, I looked at how the store bought unlined linen draperies I have from Restoration Hardware were hemmed on the sides and bottom, and figured I CAN DO THAT!!!!
But, I didn't know how. It looked really professional and complicated. They had hemmed it in a way I couldn't figure out.

Sooooo, I looked it up in my sewing machine instruction manual. I have a Baby Lock sewing machine. I love it. My old singer that I got for a college graduation gift from my parents was a piece of #$%. The bobbin thread was always tangling up. I spent most of my time trying to fix the machine, and never got around to actually sewing. So I stopped sewing for a few (30) years.

Soooooooooo, then I retired, and had the time to figure out the tension issue. My solution was to BUY A NEW MACHINE!!! The Singer machine I had learned to sew on was one of the old Feather Weight ones, it always seemed to work. They were great. Then something happened to the company, maybe they were bought by someone else, but the machines changed. So, I bought my Baby Lock (boy, I hate that name!!)
Here's a picture of my machine where I sew my magic!!! (and have my panic attacks, when I have screwed up once again. The great thing about sewing, is, a lot can be fixed with a good ripping tool!!)

Sooooooooooooooooooooo, now I am happy with my Baby Lock, and I will share with you how to hem like the big boys do!!

This is a picture of the pressure foot used to make a blind hem stitch!!!

The piece of metal that sticks down in the middle, helps guide the fabric edge in a nice straight line.
  First.....cut your fabric!!!!
  Second.....if you are making the panels fuller than a single width, (I made each panel for Miriam, a width and a half.)
 (That means, you will have to cut one width in half and seam it to a full width.)
(If you want to know how to line up the fabric to match the repeats, check out my tutorial here)!!!!!



Third......hem the sides. AND THIS IS HOW TO DO THAT!!! Fold the edge over like this....

Then fold it over again, like this........

Get the fabric into place at the sewing machine.............
Then flip the folded part under, so that only half of it is showing.....

Now, line up the metal piece that hangs down in the middle of the pressure foot with the folded edge of the fabric. You need to set the stitch to the correct setting on your machine, the one that is used for blind hems, look it up in your instruction book! That's what I did. Now, sew along the folded edge........
The stitches should look like this.....................

Look closely. See??? A little bit of fabric is caught every 1/2" or so.
Here's another shot...

This is what it looks like folded flat on the inside of the drapery panel.....

Annnnd, this is what it looks like on the finished side of the drapery panel!!!!

Just leetle tiny stitches that run down the side.
Here's another shot!!!

Don't forget to iron it when you're done. The iron is an amazing helper. It really makes a difference in the finished product. I forgot to get a shot of it ironed, so use your imagination, 'cuz I'm not going to Miriam's just to take a picture of her drapery panel edge.
Hope this was helpful.


Amy Chalmers said...

I had a great singer machine for a while too...then I went through two other $$$ machines and finally bought a very good cheap machine from overstock and I have never had an issue. You are a good teacher. I know how to do this, so I will say you did it correctly!

Janet Metzger, Artist said...

I know what the problem was with the Singers...they started making them in China probably...lots mor plastic parts....basic CRAP!

Old machines can sew through almost anything...newer one..not so much. Sad commentary indeed.

Great tutorial Betsy....thanks so much!

Janet xox

PS...I have a Viking..this thing weighs a ton and stitches through ANYTHING! I love it. And it is NOT made in China.

Anonymous said...

My machine is a Husquvarna and it does embroidery but I haven't figured out how to do it yet Ha haha !
Love it though sews like a dream. Your niece is so LUCKY to have you helping her ! I wish I had an Aunt Betsy !

Donna D said...

Great tutorial!

Brandy~GreyLaneHome said...

OMG!!! You rock. Miriam is so lucky to have such a talented auntie. If ever you want to adopt a southern black niece and decide to start taking interviews....I'll be first in line. Your blog and style is so great. I love it.

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